Amphibious Operations Fit AirSea Battle Concept

Amphibious operations have a place in the new Air Force-Navy AirSea Battle concept, said Adm. John Harvey commander of the Navy’s Fleet Forces Command. “I can very much see a situation coming up where we will need to conduct a significant amphibious raid in order to take out a portion of [the] battle network . . . to give our high-end forces the access to the battlespace,” Harvey told reporters Tuesday in Washington, D.C. AirSea Battle is designed to overcome an adversary’s attempts to deny US forces access to an area. Harvey cautioned against regarding the concept as a new approach to combat operations and against segregating high-end and low-end combat capabilities. Operating in denied environments is the basis for how militaries do business, and it is not helpful to look at combat operations very parochially, he said. The deeper issue is rapid adaptation in war, as well as peace, he said. He noted the change in tactics and weaponry that occurred from the 1967 Six Day War in the Middle East to the 1973 Yom Kippur War, where Israeli forces were confronted with better surface-to-air missiles initially, limiting their deep strike options. (See also Amphibious Exercise Helps Prepare for Anti-Access Fights.)